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Arsenal’s Ainsley Maitand-Niles on Nottingham Forest radar

Arsenal graduate Ainsley Maitland-Niles has emerged as a summer target for Premier League newcomers Nottingham Forest, The Mirror reports.

The 24-year-old played just over 500 minutes of first-team football for Arsenal last season before he was loaned out to Roma at the beginning of the year.

His time in the Serie A was also frustrating as he was a regular on the bench. The Mirror claim that he is now eyeing a new challenge in the Premier League.

Forest have been touted as possible front-runners to sign him due to manager Steve Cooper, who knows Maitland-Niles from the England youth set-up.

Our view:

Maitland-Niles has made 132 appearances for Arsenal, but has never been able to cement a consistent spot with the vast competition for places in the squad.

He is comfortable playing in both full-back/wing-back positions, but has made it clear in the past that he prefers to operate from the heart of the midfield.

That appears unlikely to happen at Arsenal, barring a major injury crisis. Granit Xhaka and Thomas Partey are assured starters ahead of him next campaign.

The Gunners are already planning another new signing while there is further competition from the likes of Mohamed Elneny and Albert Sambi Lokonga.

With a year left on his contract, it appears the ideal time to part ways. Arsenal will be hoping for a potential bidding battle to get a reasonable fee out of him.

Forest could assure Maitland-Niles with consistent playing time after their promotion to the top-flight after a lengthy 23-year wait, but others may join the race.

Southampton and Leicester have also been credited with an interest. Everton could also return for his services after a failed attempt to sign him on loan last summer.

Arsenal could be eyeing a quick deal such that they can more recoup funds for future arrivals.

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